Dietitians reveal the best and worst foods to eat before a workout

REVEALED: The best and worst foods to eat before a workout – and why you need to re-think your fat intake if you want better results at the gym

  • Two dietitians have revealed the best and worst foods to eat before a workout
  • Chloe McLeod and Jessica Spendlove said the nutrition around a workout is key
  • They recommend you stay away from anything too high fat or high in fibre
  • Bad foods to eat include cruciferous veg, legumes and anything spicy or acidic
  • Good foods to eat include eggs on toast, porridge and snack of fruit and yoghurt 

Two dietitians have revealed the best and worst foods to eat before a workout, and why you need to be thinking about the fat and fibre content of a food if you want to see the best results in the gym.

Chloe McLeod and Jessica Spendlove, from Sydney, believe the nutrition around a workout is just as important as the workout itself.

And while some foods will power you up and make you go faster and harder, others aren’t ideal because they can take a while to digest, they sit in your stomach and make you feel ‘unwell’.

Two dietitians have revealed the best and worst foods to eat before a workout, and why you need to be thinking about the fat and fibre content of a food to see results (Chloe McLeod and Jessica Spendlove pictured)

REVEALED: THE WORST FOODS PRE-WORKOUT

Foods to avoid before a workout 

* Cruciferous vegetables like broccoli and cauliflower.

* Legumes including beans, lentils and chickpeas. 

* High fat foods like pizza, chips and anything deep-fried.

* Alcohol.

* Spicy or acidic foods. 

Speaking to lifestyle publication Bed Threads, the pair explained that there are ‘two key factors’ that influence whether a food or meal should be avoided before working out: the fibre and the fat content.

‘High fat foods, regardless if those are healthy fats or saturated and trans fats, are high in energy (calories), so they naturally take longer to digest,’ Chloe explained.

‘A longer time to digest means an increased risk of the food sitting in your stomach, leading to you feeling nauseous mid-burpee.’ 

And while you might think of fibre as healthy, eating it too close to a workout increases the risk of gastrointestinal issues.

The ideal foods you need to stay away from include cruciferous vegetables like broccoli and cauliflower, legumes including beans, chickpeas and lentils and anything high fat like pizza, chips or deep-fried foods.   

You should also avoid alcohol or anything that is too spicy or acidic. 


Chloe (pictured) said good foods to eat between two and four hours before a workout include the likes of eggs on toast (also pictured)

Porridge or overnight oats (pictured) are great slow-release carbohydrates that you can use in a session in the gym

Foods to enjoy before a workout 

* Poke or burrito bowl.

* Sushi or edamame.

* Chicken sandwich or wrap.

* Porridge or overnight oats.

* Vegetable soup with toast.

* Cereal with yoghurt and fruit.

* Fruit salad.

* Rice cakes topped with peanut butter.

* Homemade smoothie. 

REVEALED: THE BEST FOODS PRE-WORKOUT 

On the other hand, there are plenty of good foods that will fuel you up and keep you full and nourished for a good workout session.

Carbohydrates are a key energy source that the dietitians say can be used ‘during most types of exercise’. 

Chloe and Jessica believe that you should plan to have a ‘larger meal’ between two and four hours before a workout.

Then, you should enjoy a ‘light and small snack’ one to two hours before you head out.

Good meal options include a burrito or poke bowl, porridge or overnight oats, eggs on toast, sushi, vegetable soup with toast or a chicken sandwich or wrap.

Good snack options are some cereal with yoghurt and fruit, fruit salad, rice cakes topped with peanut butter or a homemade smoothie.  

Eating before a workout helps to settle your stomach, absorb some of the gastric juices and ward off hunger.

Most experts agree that you should always have a snack about 30 minutes before working out, as this will help to stave off nausea throughout a workout. 

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